The Alice Springs Memorial Club has suspended trading, gone into voluntary administration and "the committee is looking to establish a fighting fund for the people of Alice Springs to contribute to in the aim of reopening the doors as soon as possible," according to a media release this morning.
And the Todd Mall pub, Town and Country, is closing tomorrow.
Owner Geoff Booth, who is standing for councillor in Saturday's election, says on Thursday the popular drinking spot in the heart of the town will be boarded up and secured with razor wire.
Mr Booth says this follows declining trading over two years to now being just "appalling" and "13 of 14 break-ins" just this year, each causing $800 to $1000 worth of damage.
Mr Booth says his and the Memo Club's problems are very similar: "People are scared of the nighttime activities. After 5pm the town centre turns into a ghost town."
The Memo Club Administrator, Tim Clifton, of Macks Hall Clifton, says the club was in danger of trading while insolvent, and the move will give it a breathing space of one month.
The debts are "not insignificant, but well less than $1m," says Mr Clifton.
The main reason for the problem is clearly "not enough people coming through the door".
During the month a proposition will be made to the creditors, to see if they will "accept some compromises of claims" and if agreed, the club's management will be returned to the committee.
If not the club may be put into liquidation.
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The club has set up a "fighting fund ... to satisfy the claims of the unsecured creditors and to provide working capital to reopen the club". The committee says donations will go into a trust fund. Should the fighting fund fail, all cash donations will be refunded. Banks Details: Alice Springs Memorial Club Inc. (Administrator Appointed) BSB: 035-006 account: 300696.
PICTURES: Top - Town and Country Tavern. Note green sign for extended liquor permit application – now withdrawn. Photo by Hans Boessem, Todd Camera Store. Above right - The Memo Club.